I have been reading a gem of a book lately, Susannah Conway’s ‘This I Know, Notes on Unraveling the Heart.’ British freelance writer, Susannah Conway’s memoir focuses on her process of healing after her husband tragically passed away. It is written in a pensive, poignant prose that is so astute and wise and littered with her signature polaroid images. I was so excited when I finally received it in the post and I knew, even before cracking open the first few pages that it would resonate with me like no other spiritual book. It really is such a beautiful gift. Thank you Susannah! (I follow Susannah on instagram and let her know, she kindly replied!!!)
The memoir has inspired the following post, about what I have learned so far, and the things that I know for sure about unraveling the heart and getting closer to living a more authentic life.
This Much I Know…..
1. Everything you do must come from a place of truth, honesty and love. Whenever you do things from the heart, you NEVER go wrong.
2. Don’t allow your decisions to be dictated by your ego. When they come from a space of love, they are always justified.
3. Never compromise on your values. Not for anyone, be that a lover or a friend, or in anything that you do.
4. Be grateful. Every damn day. Express it with abandon.
5. Be BOLD and unapologetic. Never apologise for who you are and what you stand for. Never be afraid to express who you really are.
6. Don’t fight the present moment. Don’t wish your life away; you’re not going to get this moment again. I love this quote by Eckhart Tolle. I think it has made such a difference to the way in which I think about the present moment.
Accept- then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. Make it your friend, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life. – Eckhart Tolle.
7. Be the wo(man) in the arena.
Brene Brown, the famous TED talker, and spiritual guru on vulnerability mentions this quote from Theodore Roosevelt’s speech ‘Citizenship in a Republic’ in her book ‘Daring Greatly.’
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt
There have been countess times when I have muttered to myself ‘Stop being a chicken, GET IN THE ARENA!!” I love this quote so much. Be vulnerable and face the music.
8. This too shall pass. If I have learnt anything, it is that life is a constant cycle of renewal. The slate of life is always wiped clean at the end of the day. No matter what happens, the waves will continue to kiss the shore, the sun will continue to struggle to emerge from the clouds to signal a new day. You will be forced to heal old wounds, to forgive and to accept what you cannot change.
All photos taken from Susannah Conway’s ‘This I Know, Notes on Unraveling the Heart.’